Synergetic Beauty is a beauty retail store selling products ranging from hair care products to professional hair styling tools. From an interview with them, we learnt that one of their business strategies was the central location of their retail store. They chose their location such that it would be accessible for their customers to walk-in and physically check out their customers would want to physically see the products and test them before purchasing. Since they were selling professional hair styling tools and machines for many years, this has worked for Synergetic Beauty, until the Covid-19 pandemic hit.
When the Covid-19 pandemic hit Singapore, people faced uncertainty and feared losing their jobs resulting in retail store business slowing down. As pax restrictions kicked in, Synergetic Beauty had to come up with appointment systems to limit the number of customers in store. They also experienced a higher volume of inquiries via WhatsApp chats instead of walk-in customers since people wanted to reduce the time spent outside. This was when their website became crucial as it was the main source of information for their potential customers to browse their products.
Soon, the country went into lockdown and hair salons were forced to cease operations like many retail stores. This slowed down business even more for Synergetic Beauty since their hair salon clients were not in operation. Nevertheless, the lockdown period has inspired many to take hair styling into their own hands. People started to DIY, cutting and dyeing their own hair at home. It is possible that Synergetic Beauty experienced higher website traffic. However, their overall business was still negatively affected since the profits from small hair products would not match up to professional hair treatment machines.
Synergetic Beauty realised the importance of a modern and organised e-commerce system for their website and were committed to making the website appeal to their potential clients. They went for a website revamp and made sure to add product details into products to help customers gain confidence in making online purchases. After their website completion by eFusion Technology, Synergetic Beauty chose to maintain their ecommerce website on their own instead of outsourcing to save cost. When interviewed, they mentioned that one of the main challenges they faced in this process was navigating the backend of their website. Nevertheless, they were able to manage all the basic functions of WordPress.
When asked about where they see Synergetic Beauty’s business in 5 years, Synergetic responded that they are looking forward to the end of the Covid-19 pandemic and hoping for business to resume soon. Even then, it is likely that they need a new business strategy to cope with the new normal.
Many retail stores in the beauty industry face similar struggles as Synergetic Beauty. Amidst the Covid-19 pandemic, it becomes crucial for these businesses to adapt quickly. Many of these businesses have chosen to hop onto the e-commerce bandwagon which has cushioned the impact of the pandemic.
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